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Finding stories in history

Doris Kearns Goodwin honored with OSV's Ken Burns Achievement Award

Documentary filmmaker Ken Burns shares a thought with author and presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin moments before presenting her with a lifetime achievement award at an Old Sturbridge Reception Thursday night. Christopher Tanguay. (click for larger version)
May 23, 2010
STURBRIDGE — When President Lyndon B. Johnson began drafting his memoirs, he had difficulty recalling some of the more poignant moments early on in his presidency.

The more thorough chapters of the memoir were those for which he could reference audio recordings of telephone conversations he had while in the Oval Office.

The lesson Johnson apparently learned from that exercise was to always have a recording device hooked up to the telephone — a piece of advice he imparted to his successor, Richard M. Nixon.

That tidbit of alleged history was one of a handful of anecdotes presidential historian and Pulitzer Prize winning author Doris Kearns Goodwin shared with a capacity crowd at Old Sturbridge Village's Stephen M. Brewer Theater Thursday night.

Goodwin was the third recipient of the annual Ken Burns Lifetime Achievement Award, sponsored by OSV.

Burns, a documentary filmmaker best known for his films "The Civil War," "Baseball," and "Jazz," made his first film in 1975 at OSV as a senior project before graduating from Hampshire College.

For more on this story, please see Monday's Southbridge Evening News.

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